Ride Steady



And Joker.

"Where is she?" Joker clipped.

Tyra looked to Joker as she moved to her husband in his seat at the head of the table. Joker had been pacing under the watchful eyes of his brothers. Now he'd stopped, legs locked and planted wide, hands to his hips, secrets still behind his eyes, dark at the surface nearing to black.

But that black could disintegrate in a second. Tack knew it.

It would not ice over.

It would blaze hot in a way that could consume them all.

But especially a girl named Carissa.

Tack knew the minute he saw her that she wasn't just a girl in a cute dress with shoes that were as sexy as they were ridiculous that Joker helped change a tire.

This girl was something else.

"Elvira's taking her home," Tyra told Joker and looked back to Tack. "Hawk let her have the afternoon off. She's staying with her. Lanie took Nash and went back to work. She and I are going over to Carissa's after to hang with her and Elvira."

Tack nodded.

Tyra hefted her round ass in its tight skirt up on the table by his side and twisted her torso to the room but kept her eyes locked to her man.

He read them before she spoke. She'd been his woman a long time. She'd given him two sons. She'd given him a multitude of phenomenal orgasms. She'd given him her love. She'd given him redemption. She'd told him he turned her world to color. She made his life complete.

"Lenny wouldn't let her back on the road in that car," she said to Tack quietly, but the room could hear. "He said it's a heap. Tack, honey, Lenny says it'll take nearly four thousand dollars' worth of parts and labor to make it safe."

"Do it," he said shortly.

"That car isn't worth that," she replied.

"She gonna take a free car from us?" he asked.

"Not likely," she answered.

"Tell Lenny to do it."

Her lips curved up.

He knew what that meant. It meant he'd get her appreciation for his kindness for a girl he didn't know later.

He didn't do it for that.

But he was looking forward to it.

"What does get down on her knees mean?" Joker asked, and Red twisted to him as Tack lifted his eyes to his brother. "She tell you that?"

When his wife didn't answer, Tack glanced at her to see her looking at Hop and Boz.

They were closest to Joker.

It was a warning.

Tack came alert.

She gave her attention to Joker. "She was really upset, Joker. She shared a great deal."

"She share that?" Joker bit off.

"Yes," Tyra said quietly.

"And?" Joker prompted.

"Brother-" Hop started, beginning to unfold his body from his chair.

"And?" Joker barked, his focus on Red.

"Her ex-husband is fond of filing motions. As part of these motions, and him winning them, it means she doesn't receive child support regardless that his income is more than triple hers. Therefore, she's no longer able to pay an attorney's fees," Tyra answered.

"That isn't answering my question, Cherry," Joker said like a warning .

Tyra's best girl, his daughter, some of her family, and many of her friends called his woman Ty-Ty. He called her Red. His brothers called her Cherry.

"She met one who expressed he'd like an alternate form of payment."

Hop and Boz got close. His son, Rush, not stupid, also moved to do the same.

They did it, but they knew Joker better.

He didn't lose it.

He got cold in the way the entire room felt a chill.

"Name," he whispered.

Tyra looked to Tack.

Tack looked to Joker.

"She'll give it to Boz and Hound. They'll deal with him," he declared.

"Oh no they won't," Joker replied.

"Who's she to you?" Tack asked.

"Not your business," Joker answered.

"Saw what I saw in my own club, Joker. Saw it, didn't like it. No mother should go through what I witnessed today. Saw you watchin' her go through it. Don't get it. Who is she to you?"

"Brother, not gonna repeat myself," Joker returned.

"We got two choices with this," Tack shot back. "We ignore it, which means we let a brother do what he's gotta do and not take his back, or we go all in. We go all in, we gotta know why we're doin' it."

"No one's askin' you to go all in."

"And you didn't sit in this room and throw in your name to earn your patch thinkin' you'd ever go it alone without your brothers at your back. So that means my two choices are bullshit. There's only one. Knowin' that, we gotta know, who is she to you?"

"No one."

It was a lie. Everyone in the room knew it. They didn't like it. But Joker wasn't done.

"Went to school with her. She was a cheerleader."

That wasn't a surprise.

"Remember, twenty years back, the kid on her trike who got crushed by a car in her driveway?" Joker asked.

The air in the room got thin.

They remembered.

"That was her sister," Joker finished.

"Fuck me," Hop muttered.

"Far's I know, lost her mother later too," Joker went on.

"High school friend you're lookin' out for?" Tack asked.

"She has no clue who I am," Joker answered.

Honey hair. Great legs. Fantastic ass. Excellent tits. Shining eyes.

Tack bet that fucking stung.

"Doesn't remember?" Tack asked.

"Wouldn't. And I'm glad. I'm not the kid she knew. She ain't gonna remember either."

That said a lot, and Tack didn't like what it said. But he had no choice. Joker wanted that, he, nor any of the brothers, could make another play.

"Where do you want the Club to go with this?" Tack asked.

"Make sure I don't get incarcerated after I make an attorney swallow his own balls."

Tack clenched his teeth to stop a smile before he went on, "Which attorney?"

"Strike that. Make sure I don't get incarcerated after I make one attorney swallow his own balls and another one do the same with his dick shoved up his ass."

"You did either of those, her ex has the weight behind him she says he does, she could feel it," Tack warned.

Joker's jaw flexed.


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